An Appeal to History
The Truth about a Singular Lawsuit
Written by the former president of Haiti. "Prosper Avril is the best chance for a genuine democracy in Haiti. He is intelligent and respected by his troops" (New York Times, October 8, 1988). This is a statement about Prosper Avril after his accession to power in Haiti. However, this career officer, born on December 12, 1937 at Thomazeau, a tiny village not far from Port-au-Prince, first in his class at the Military Academy of Haiti, and qualified in law, did not succeed in fulfilling his mission of introducing 'irreversible democracy' into Haiti. In contrast, he was eventually obliged to resign and was afterwards brought before court, accused of being personally responsible for the mistreatment of fellow citizens during his time in office. What really did happen?
An Appeal to History: The Truth about a Singular Lawsuit, is a journal of the events occurring in Haiti between September 17, 1988, the date Prosper Avril assumed power, and mid-1994, marking the end of the civil action filed against him before the Federal Court of Miami. It skillfully relates unrevealed facts, which brought about the failure of his government and served as a pretext for this lawsuit. Moreover, besides being a very valuable reference for historians, this book also covers the legal aspects of the lawsuit, described as "unique" by the author, in presenting a passionate plea, based on solid arguments and pertinent juridical and historical references.
The importance for Haitian history of the period covered, and the singularity of this case linked to its possible implications in the evolution of international law, make this book of real interest for lawyers, historians, researchers, scholars, students and all those, Haitians or foreigners, who are attentive analysts (or observers) of the tormented history of the Haitian nation.